Best Online Christian Colleges and Universities for Master’s Degrees


The best Christian colleges and universities for earning a master’s degree provide a wide variety of advanced degree options for online students.

Top 10 Online Christian Colleges and Universities for Master's Degrees

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  1. Duke University
  2. Fordham University
  3. Baylor University
  4. Saint Louis University
  5. Loyola University Chicago
  6. DePaul University
  7. Duquesne University
  8. University of San Diego
  9. Samford University
  10. Texas Christian University
  1. Liberty University 99%
  2. University of Detroit Mercy 93%
  3. St. John's University 85%
  4. Oral Roberts University 85%
  5. Duquesne University 84%
  6. Xavier University 84%
  7. Samford University 84%
  8. Creighton University 78%
  9. St. Bonaventure University 78%
  10. Loyola University Chicago 77%
  1. DePaul University 17 to 1
  2. Liberty University 17 to 1
  3. St. John's University 16 to 1
  4. Oral Roberts University 16 to 1
  5. Baylor University 15 to 1
  6. Loyola University Chicago 14 to 1
  7. Texas Christian University 13 to 1
  8. Fordham University 13 to 1
  9. Abilene Christian University 13 to 1
  10. Duquesne University 13 to 1
  1. Duke University $60,244
  2. Fordham University $56,161
  3. Fairfield University $52,870
  4. University of San Diego $52,864
  5. Texas Christian University $51,660
  6. Baylor University $50,232
  7. Saint Louis University $48,824
  8. Loyola University Chicago $47,808
  9. St. John's University $46,050
  10. Creighton University $44,524
  1. Duke University $57,900
  2. Baylor University $37,674
  3. Texas Christian University $32,220
  4. St. John's University $30,666
  5. University of San Diego $27,936
  6. Duquesne University $24,534
  7. Abilene Christian University $24,174
  8. Fordham University $23,112
  9. Saint Louis University $21,960
  10. University of Detroit Mercy $21,276
  1. Abilene Christian University
  2. St. Bonaventure University
  3. Oral Roberts University
  4. Bob Jones University
  5. Fairfield University
  6. Xavier University
  7. University of Detroit Mercy
  8. Liberty University
  9. Creighton University
  10. St. John's University
  1. Duke University 6%
  2. University of San Diego 53%
  3. Texas Christian University 54%
  4. Fairfield University 56%
  5. Baylor University 57%
  6. Fordham University 58%
  7. DePaul University 69%
  8. Abilene Christian University 70%
  9. Saint Louis University 70%
  10. Loyola University Chicago 77%
  1. Duke University 6 to 1
  2. Saint Louis University 9 to 1
  3. University of Detroit Mercy 11 to 1
  4. Xavier University 11 to 1
  5. St. Bonaventure University 12 to 1
  6. Creighton University 12 to 1
  7. Samford University 12 to 1
  8. Bob Jones University 12 to 1
  9. Fairfield University 12 to 1
  10. Texas Christian University 13 to 1
  1. Bob Jones University $20,950
  2. Liberty University $22,713
  3. University of Detroit Mercy $30,154
  4. Oral Roberts University $31,558
  5. Samford University $35,360
  6. St. Bonaventure University $37,640
  7. Abilene Christian University $39,350
  8. DePaul University $42,012
  9. Xavier University $42,460
  10. Duquesne University $43,526
  1. Liberty University $7,847
  2. Bob Jones University $9,532
  3. Oral Roberts University $11,670
  4. Xavier University $12,060
  5. St. Bonaventure University $14,382
  6. Creighton University $17,190
  7. DePaul University $17,951
  8. Loyola University Chicago $18,990
  9. Fairfield University $19,383
  10. Samford University $20,935

Key Takeaways

  • Christian colleges and universities typically offer students the opportunity to pursue both traditional and faith-based educational options as part of a spiritual campus community.

  • Students interested in an online graduate education from a Christian college or university have a wide range of options for top advanced degrees such as MBAs, MSCs, and master’s degrees in areas like criminal justice, cybersecurity, Christian ministry, and more.

  • The faith-based institutions included here offer the best online master’s degrees among Christian colleges and universities.

Featured Programs

Overview of Christian Colleges and Universities

Why earn a degree from Christian college or university?

Graduate students who attend Christian colleges and universities have the opportunity to participate in advanced academic programs within communities of shared faith and values. Many top Christian colleges and universities offer online classes as well as fully online graduate programs. This makes it possible for Christian students to earn advanced degrees in both secular and religious academic programs while balancing personal and professional responsibilities.

What kinds of degrees can you get at Christian colleges and universities?

Christian colleges range from community colleges to top-ranked universities. This means you can complete both undergraduate programs like associates and bachelor’s degrees, and graduate programs, like master’s and doctoral degrees, through an array of accredited Christian colleges and universities. Most degree levels are available to online students as well as on-campus students.

What will a Christian college prepare you for?

Students at Christian colleges and universities can typically choose from the same variety of degree programs as students attending secular colleges and universities. This means students can prepare for popular liberal arts pathways like criminal justice, business management, and early childhood education; STEM careers in areas like cybersecurity, data science, and health sciences; and faith-based degrees in areas like Christian ministry and Christian counseling.

Woman with glasses looking off into the distance

Do Christian colleges offer a lot of online graduate degrees?

As the popularity of online degrees increases, Christian colleges are increasingly offering online classes to cater to today’s students. Online programs through Christian universities typically offer access to the same content, curriculum, and credit requirements as brick-and-mortar programs. The number of highly regarded fully online Christian universities is also growing. Online Christian colleges and universities offer remote learning opportunities while still offering access to a community united in its shared faith and values.

Do you have to be a specific denomination to get a master’s degree from a Christian college?

Anybody can earn a master’s degree from a Christian college. Though Christian colleges can be denomination-specific or non-denominational, most Christian colleges and universities allow students flexibility to practice their own religion while still enjoying the close-knit feel of a Christian college. If you are non-denominational, and are strictly interested in a Christian college because of the academic programs offered, online degree programs may be a great fit for you.

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Online Master’s Degrees from Christian Colleges and Universities

Why get an online master’s degree from a Christian college?

Top online Christian colleges offer excellent graduate degree programs for online students. Students pursuing graduate degrees are often already working in their profession. Online degree programs offer an excellent alternative to on-campus education, especially for working professionals who must balance online learning and job responsibilities.

What can I do with an online master’s degree from a Christian college?

Students who earn graduate degrees from online Christian school can qualify for all the same career opportunities as students earning their graduate degrees on-campus. The vast majority of Christian colleges and universities offer graduate degrees in a full spectrum of disciplines. For Christian students interested in a graduate degree steeped in faith, many Christian colleges offer graduate degrees both through traditional and online education.

What will I study with an online master’s degree from a Christian college?

Most online master’s degrees will include a focus on your core discipline alongside a faith-based education. Many online Christian colleges will offer opportunities to learn through both secular and Christian lenses. The top online Christian colleges will prepare students to apply their skills in both secular and faith-based settings. For instance, if you are pursuing an online MBA through a Christian college or university, you may be able to take secular courses such as Theories in Business Leadership alongside faith-based courses such as Christian Business Ethics.

Are online master’s degrees from Christian colleges respected?

Accredited Christian colleges are respected. Before you consider graduate programs or graduate programs offered by Christian colleges, make sure the schools on your list are accredited by the Colleges and Schools Commission in your state. This accreditation is also important if you plan to qualify for federal financial aid.

Man holding a bible

What qualities should I look for in an online master’s from a Christian college?

Finding the best online Christian colleges for a master’s degree will depend on the features you’re seeking in a higher education. You may receive better personal attention by choosing from online programs with a low student to faculty ratio, for example. And if you’re looking for affordable online Christian colleges, you may want to begin by looking for schools nearby with in-state tuition rates. You may also wish to contact individual schools to learn more about school-based financial aid programs.

Interested in getting an advanced degree in religious studies from a secular college? Check out the best research universities for earning a degree in religious studies.

Best Online Christian Colleges and Universities
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25 Best Online Christian Master’s Degree Programs

  1. #1

    Duke University

    Durham , NC
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  4. #7

    Saint Louis University

    Saint Louis , MO
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  5. #15

    Liberty University

    Lynchburg , VA
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Online Degree Frequently Asked Questions

If this is your first time taking an online course, the experience may require a time of adjustment. Although you’ll typically learn the same material and take the same exams as your on-campus peers, going online will require greater independence and responsibility than going in person. You’ll be accountable for your own time management, for harnessing the online educational technology that you’ll need to use, and for completing the course requirements, such as listening to lectures, learning lessons, reading texts, and handing in assignments. This means you’ll need to create a suitable workspace for yourself, maintain a realistic schedule, and take the initiative in building relationships with your instructors and classmates. With online college, your goal is to find a balance between independence and engagement.

No. The only part of online education that’s easier than campus-based education is ease of access: all you need is a computer and an internet connection for online education. But even this seeming advantage of online education can be misleading: what’s easier, studying online with your computer and internet connection from your home where you need to cook, clean, pay rent, and maintain a job? Or studying on campus in a dorm where all your living needs are handled by the school, and college staff are there to help you every step of the way?

If you take the commute to campus out of the equation, campus-based education is easier. All the support structures available on campus for students, especially with real people to help you in person, are not there online. The demands on you as an online student will largely be the same as for your campus-based counterpart, but without the same helps.

In general, your online courses will present the same material and test you in the same way as traditional in-person courses. In many cases, you’ll even have the same instructors as your on-campus counterparts. In fact, if you are adjusting to the experience of independent learning with remote educational technology for the first time, online college may be considerably more challenging than campus-based college. For a few insights on how to manage this new online experience, check out our 10 Tips for Adjusting to School Online.

Accreditation is especially important when it comes to online college. This is because the online education landscape is a mix of highly-reputable non-profit institutions on the one end and less-than-reputable for-profit institutions on the other end. Accreditation gives you the power to identify the more reputable actors in online education. Accreditation is a stamp of approval from an independent accrediting agency indicating that a college or university is meeting standards of quality and credibility. School-wide accreditation falls into two major categories: regional and national accreditation. Regional accreditors generally hold jurisdiction only over schools in the states comprising their region, whereas national accreditors hold jurisdiction over schools in all states. Regional accreditation is widely regarded as a more rigorous standard of quality and credibility than national accreditation.

Attending a college or university that is not regionally accredited could limit your opportunities. For students seeking an online education, we strongly recommend that they opt for regionally accredited schools. Regional accreditation ensures eligibility for federal loans and grants, ensures your college credits can be transferred between schools, and ensures that your degree credits can be accepted if you wish to earn an advanced degree. For more on this important topic, check out our What is Accreditation and Why Does It Matter? College & University Accreditation Guide.

As long as your online college degree is regionally accredited (see the previous point), you should have little difficulty transferring most of your credits or credentials to another regionally accredited undergraduate school. Every school carries its own standards and procedures for granting a transfer of credits. In many cases, you will encounter some bureaucratic haggling in which some of your credits will be transferred and others may be refused. However, provided that you have attended an online school with recognized regional accreditation, you should be in good shape in transferring your credits earned online.

In most cases, as long you graduate from a well-regarded, regionally-accredited online college, prospective employers won’t look sideways at your degree. In fact, unless you attend an exclusively online college or university, there will likely be no specific indicator on your degree, transcript, or resumé differentiating your school from its brick-and-mortar counterpart. This means that your employer will likely only differentiate between an online and in-person degree if you mention this distinction.

Some employers may express the concern that because you did your degree online, you may need to transition from an online education experience to in-person workplace experience. But in an age of Covid, that concern seems much diminished. The fact is that much employment these days is remote. And collaboration increasingly happens online over Zoom. Many employers will therefore view your online degree as evidence of valuable 21st century professional skills such as independence, self-motivation, time management, and tech savvy.

If you are a student who thrives on the dynamic energy of in-person discussion, who requires the physical surroundings of a classroom to feel engaged, or who considers the social aspects of education to be of equal importance to the actual content of your courses, online education will be less than ideal for you (though depending on your circumstances, it may also be the only viable option).

While there is much in traditional campus-based education that can be substituted or simulated through the online medium, some students may find that there is nothing that can replace the conversation, collaboration, and motivation that occur in an actual in-person classroom setting. As you transition to online education, one of the biggest challenges you will likely face in getting the most out of your online classes is overcoming this difference between “real reality” and “virtual reality.” Fortunately, we’ve got some great Tips for Online Education Beginners.

The advantages of online classes are many. Above all, online courses give you the freedom and flexibility to attend class from anywhere that works for you, whether you’re at home, in a coffee shop, or in a quiet conference room at work. In many cases, you’ll also enjoy the convenience of asynchronous learning opportunities-educational experiences that you can complete at your own pace and on your own schedule. This may include pre-taped lectures, ongoing chat-board discussions, and 24/7 access to digital materials. And of course, just as there are some learners who prefer the energy of a live classroom, there are those who learn best when working in their own personal space, free from distractions. If this sounds like you, you might find the solitude of online learning to be a major advantage.

Resources for Online College-Bound Students

Whether you’re just getting started on your college search, you’re looking for survival tips on your way to a bachelor’s degree, or you’re preparing for the transition into grad school, we’ve got guides, how to’s and tons of other valuable resources to keep you moving forward in your educational journey.

Find other top schools with a look at these Online Degrees.

Or learn more with a look at our University Rankings Guide.


Check out our Guide to Life for Grad Students for more tips and insights on choosing the right advanced degree for you.

Or get valuable study tips, advice on adjusting to campus life, and much more at our student resource homepage.